Veggie Restaurants: Start Your Own with a Franchise

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veggie restaurant

Vegetarianism is a growing trend and businesses in both the food and franchising sectors are starting to sit up and take notice of the increasing number of non-meat eaters. Here, we examine how eating habits have changed, how many UK residents classify themselves as vegetarian, and how three separate franchises are appealing to this growing demographic.

Restaurant veggie

In the UK and across the world, eating habits are in constant flux and always changing. In the post-war years, international cuisines were introduced to the country, and we began eating Indian curries, Italian spaghetti dishes, and spicy Mexican dishes. Now that theyve become a central part of our own culinary culture, new changes are occurring. One of the biggest and most noticeable of these changes is the growth in vegetarian and vegan eating habits.

Currently, there are approximately 3.5 million vegans in the UK alone. Considering there were just 540,000 self-identified vegans in the UK in 2016, this is a remarkable increase. The number of vegetarians in the UK is also growing and is likely to reach 10 million by the end of the decade. This makes opening a veggie or vegan restaurant an appealing prospect.

Veggie vegan restaurant

While there are a considerable number of independent vegan and veggie restaurants, there are relatively few vegetarian franchises. However, many businesses offer products and services that will appeal to a vegetarian audience. Below, we take a look at one truly vegan franchise and two companies whose commitment to vegetables cannot be questioned.

Humpit

Humpit is one of the only UK franchises to have committed to a 100% vegan menu, and it is currently reaping the rewards. The young business, established only in 2014, has already earned a number of accolades, including the Virgin Start-Up award at the 2015 Foodpreneur awards. The franchise network encompasses five units, though there are already plans to open a further four in 2019. The company hopes to be able to launch more locations in the upcoming year but is searching for the right individuals to operate its new franchised restaurants.

Specialising in hummus and other plant-based food items, Humpit appeals to an increasingly large demographic that, if not already vegan or vegetarian, is attempting to consume far less meat. In this sense, its at the forefront of the franchising sector and seems to have a jump on its competitors, many of who havent caught up with the latest consumer trends.

A Humpit franchise will cost investors approximately £70,000, though only £30,000 of this will need to be made available at the start of the franchise agreement. The remaining £40,000 will be required as working capital helping you to grow your business in its early stages.

In return for your investment, youll get help finding a location for your restaurant, as well as guidance fitting it out and preparing it for launch. All the equipment required to operate the business is provided, and franchisees enrol on a comprehensive training programme that covers all the skills necessary to manage a franchise unit. Ongoing support is offered to franchisees by the experienced franchisor team.

Tossed

While Tossed isnt strictly a veggie restaurant, its salad-centric product range makes it ideally suited to those who would rather avoid meat. The franchise focuses on providing customers with fresh, healthy, and nutritionally balanced food that also tastes great. Though the franchise encompasses roughly 24 restaurants, the vast majority of outlets are situated in the US, with a small number in the UK and the Middle East. The franchise was established in 2005, with its first store opening in Paddington in London.

An initial investment of £20,000 is required to get the business off of the ground, but a total of £200,000 is likely to be needed if the franchise is to succeed. Because the business has developed strong working relationships with a number of major lenders, would-be franchisees can expect to raise anywhere between 50-70% of this amount by borrowing.

Franchisees receive two weeks of training the vast majority of which is carried out at a certified training restaurant and which covers day-to-day operations, customer service, cash management, inventory control, and basic business management. Ongoing support and guidance are offered, and the franchise will help all new team members launch their business. The franchise is looking for individuals with some experience of the franchising sector or restaurant industry.

Riverford

Riverford isnt strictly a restaurant, but it is a franchise that emphasises good, healthy vegetables and that will appeal to those pursuing a healthier lifestyle. Offering organic veg boxes to customers all across the UK, Riverford has grown at an exponential rate since the business was established in 1987. Tasked with finding a more sustainable means of getting fresh veg to consumers tables, the business founder, Guy Watson, developed one of the most comprehensive home delivery services in the food industry. With more than 58 franchisees, the network can offer considerable support to new franchisees, making it an attractive prospect to investors.

The franchise requires at least £40,000 in investment if you're to open a new franchise unit. However, further working capital is likely to be required if you're to support the new franchise unit through its early stages. Riverford's most successful franchisees generate annual revenue of over £1 million, so new franchisees can rest assured that theres plenty of scope for business growth.

In return for this investment, franchisees receive a week-long induction at the Riverford farm. This covers all aspects of managing and running the business. After this, youll continue to receive support from the experienced and talented franchisor team. The franchise is looking for individuals who like the idea of providing customers with healthy, fresh food thats ethically sourced and built upon local farming. They are currently looking for franchisees to take over a number of territories around the UK all of which have a proven track record of success.

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